Finley’s First Month

It has been a whole month since our baby girl was born and it feels oddly like it was yesterday and forever ago all at the same time. It’s 9:38pm on the night before September 1st and I am forcing myself to sit down and write out this post because 1) it has been on my to do list for awhile now and 2) I know I will be so mad at myself if I don’t. So… in the full transparent parent truth, I’m sitting here with the messiest bun, spit up on on my shirt, haven’t eaten and Sterling is taking one for the team trying to put Finley back to bed as she’s upstairs crying. Now this picture may seem chaotic (and it is) but through all the chaos and tears, mess and poop, this has been the most beautiful month of my life.

It’s crazy to me to think it’s been a month since she was born and then I look back on these pictures for the blog and I’m floored by how much she’s changed! Her intensely chunky cheeks have thinned out a bit only to be replaced by some chunkier arms and legs :). She is SO alert when she’s awake and makes new faces every day. She’s started to stick out her tongue and smile more and more. My favorite expressions are when she raises her eyebrows when she eats as if to say “WOAH – good stuff!” and when she smiles as she falls asleep.

So far she’s been a pretty good sleeper and is already giving us solid 4 hour stretches at night (versus the two and a half in the beginning) (or the cluster feeding in the very beginning – woof). Her second week at home we accidentally let her sleep 6 hours because she didn’t wake up. As we woke up refreshed we both looked at each other like “Sh** is this bad?!” I’m learning that this is a weird part of being a new parent – finding the balance of learning what to be worried about and what isn’t a big deal. My first instinct has been naturally to think “Should I be worried about this?” and then I either Marco Polo my mom friends, google it or call my own mom. All three sources usually say “Nope, totally normal” which as a first time mom is exactly what I want to hear.

The first month has been such a learning curve but has also been so amazing! We’ve been able to find a pretty great balance and routine (knock on wood) but now that Sterling is back at work it’s a whole new challenge. Mostly because Finley loves to be held and so doing any kind of task (laundry… dishes… showering… putting on clothes after the shower… editing her newborn pictures that we took over three weeks ago…. ) is a lot harder. So I’m learning that a good long nap is like finding GOLD.

While each week presents a new challenge, it also brings new sweet moments that I hope I never forget. Each moment I feel like my heart is growing bigger and bigger as I fall deeper and deeper in love with her. I’m trying my hardest to take all the pictures because time is just slipping away.

Here are some memorable moments from her first month:

  • The moment she was born – she kicked her way out (she was breech so we had to have a Csection), after hearing her crying, Sterling and I just started to weep and thank God for her and all the beautiful things she’s going to do in this world.
  • Bringing her home and feeling SO at peace to not be at the hospital any more!
  • Meeting family for the first time and seeing my mom teach my brothers how to hold her as they’ve never really held a baby before.
  • Having Sterling’s parents come up for a whole weekend to meet her!
  • Sharing her name with everyone!
  • Seeing her accidentally give us the finger – all the time! She obviously doesn’t know what she’s doing but since day one she would stick out her middle fingers. We get a lot of laughs from this!
  • Her first sponge bath and real bath which she HATED. The first real bath was kind of a hot mess as Sterling got peed on and then got in the tub fully clothed to give her more support. We still haven’t figured out how to give her a bath without him in the tub too (it’s pretty comical to be honest).
  • The first bath that she really LOVED! Seeing her big eyed looking around was amazing!
  • Watching Sterling read books to her at night and seeing the way she looks up at him. It’s been amazing seeing him become a Dad.
  • Making up songs to keep her calm because she loves to be sung to. All of which are random thoughts and feelings that sometimes rhyme but are always silly and usually begging in nature. Sterling is currently singing “OOOO BABY BABY GO TO SLEEP yeah go to sleep, go to sleep yeah go go to sleep.” And a reoccurring favorite: “Finley girl, Finley girl you sh** on your mom, yeah sh** on your mom you sh** on your mom” (sung to Jingle Bell Rock). See the next bullet point for an explanation to that song.
  • The moment when I got dressed in real clothes for the first time to take her to the doctor and she fire hydrant pooped ALL over me! It was honestly soo crazy that I wasn’t even upset.
  • Successfully putting her down to bed at 8pm and using the baby monitor downstairs as we watched a movie and ate ice cream! We looked at each other and said “I think we’re doing it!? We’re parenting!”
  • The time I didn’t time her feeding correctly with her doctor’s appointment and she left SCREAMING bloody murder. This led to us having to pull the car over in a corner of the parking lot so I could feed her in the back of the car for the first time. Which would have been fine – if I hadn’t worn a non nursing dress which I had to completely remove in said parking lot… (FACE PALM)
  • How soft her skin is and they way she likes to have her cheek on my cheek as she falls asleep.
  • How she loves to be held and snuggle to fall asleep 🙂
  • Figuring out the baby carrier! HANDS FREE FOR THE WIN!
  • Taking her on walks almost every day!
  • Her first time picking crabs (or watching) as we had a goodbye dinner for my brother who just moved to Columbus, Ohio.

Finley Favorites:

  • Being sung to – her favorites include: You are My Sunshine, House at Pooh Corner, Taps (from camp), the Fives Song (from camp) and a made up lullaby 🙂
  • Being held and walking around the house.
  • Ceiling fans!
  • Baths (thank goodness) but she HATES getting out of the bath
  • Being on her play mat for awake time – she especially loves this picture of a black and white cactus!
  • Eating! Seriously – girl loves to eat!

Now for the images from the month – side note: most of these are iPhone images and I don’t mind that they aren’t the greatest edits or glamorous composition (or even in focus for some) because it’s our life and I want to always have this look back on how small she is and how beautiful this life is!

At the hospital – the moment they finally brought her over to me! This felt like it took FOREVER for me to see her and touch her. I love the picture on the right of us and how calm she looks.
My favorite picture of us from the hospital! It is in no way glamorous but I just love it!
At the hospital. Look at those cheeks! We had to make due with one window and a very small space next to a long red bench where we put her bucket so we could get these pictures.
After bringing her home my parents and brothers came by to meet her. Because of COVID we couldn’t have too many people in the house so my sister and her boyfriend got their own day. My Dad ordered these surgical gowns, masks and gloves so that everyone could meet her safely and hold her for the first time.
My mom teaching my brother John how to hold her. 🙂
My sister happened to walk by with her boyfriend and pup as everyone was meeting her. She got to see her through the glass door before meeting her the next day.
My sister and my other brother Bradley holding Finley. 🙂
Sterling’s parents were so amazing and went out of their way to get COVID tested and then quarantined for two weeks before driving up to meet her! They drove straight from Charlottesville without stopping to be extra safe and we are so grateful! What sweet memories!
This little girl is spoiled with snuggles.
Don’t worry – he isn’t really asleep!
We gave into the binky game when we were at the hospital – honestly it was one of those things I couldn’t let myself worry about – I figured, it’s not going to ruin her whole life even if the lactation consultants at the hospital made it seem that way. To each their own.
Girlfriend is a snuggle bug!
LOL – I told you! She’s been doing this since day one!
Getting so big!
More and more alert every day!
We love our walks and finding new places to go! This is us at Lake Roland for the first time! It was GORGEOUS!
We introduced tummy time last week and are trying to keep her active during awake windows so she sleeps better at night. So far – so good!

And here is a sneak peek of our newborn portraits that we did a few weeks back! It took me FOREVER to find the time to edit these but they are finally done and are without a doubt my most favorite images I’ve ever taken! The full blog post of these images will be up on FRIDAY! 🙂

Now some of her portraits I snagged of her on now that she’s officially one month old.

SOO much personality already!!
Sterling had me teach him how to knit to calm me down when I’d have anxiety flare ups at the start of the pandemic shut down. He knit Finley these little blankies and I think its just the sweetest!
She’s gotten so big!!

Leave a Reply